Kenyan startup Pariti launches to connect underserved ecosystems with global expertise

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Kenyan startup Pariti has launched an online platform that connects companies in underserved ecosystems with the global skills and investment they need to succeed.

Pariti has built a semi-automated platform that manages connects clients with what they need and manages all functions from a backend perspective. 

Essentially, it connects companies with local and global freelancers to fulfil various key tasks. Pariti freelancers have skills in finance, market research, and design, and the startup pairs them with companies looking for support. Projects conducted thus far range from a financial model to a full capital raise. 

“We also bridge the gap to investors by matching companies to investors based on their investment focus,” co-founder and chief executive officer (CEO) Yacob Berhane told Disrupt Africa.

Berhane has been doing this type of work on the continent for some time, and formally launched Pariti as a company one year ago. In stealth mode until early this year, it has already had five revenue-generating pilots in three countries, with clients such as Moringa School, Africa’s Talking and Complete Farmer. 

A “startup for startups”, then, with Berhane saying Pariti was trying to serve companies in markets where capital and talent are limited.

“Access to talent and capital is imbalanced and we want to build the platform to balance the scales. Doing so we empower the people that will be the change-makers of their community, country, or continent,” he said.

“Also, most of the money is going to a certain demographic which is bad for investors and companies. This happens a lot because investors only have so much time and the people that can get to them have a privilege that doesn’t necessarily mean they have the best business. Our investment relations service allows investors to be exposed to all types of deals.”

Pariti raised some early-stage funding in the middle of 2019, and is already generating revenue. Berhane said it had already been approached about being acquired, which he said was validation for the concept, while it has seen a 450 per cent increase in client leads since formal launch.

“Similar interest has been present for freelancer interest. It is still early days with a good amount of interest and excitement, so we’ll have to take it with a grain of salt before we can steadily predict what conversion and uptake will be,” he said.

The startup has so far worked on or secured projects in Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, Senegal and South Africa, and is expanding into Latin America this year, with Mexico being its first stop. It charges a service charge on each project.

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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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